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Thread: Troubles With Cloudy water

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    Troubles With Cloudy water

    I have been having problems with my pool since last summer. Purchased a house last august where the pool just had a large chicken wire wooden structure on top of it to keep out individuals, so the water was extremely green and algae filled from a summer with no chemicals/cover. Tried to get it working that summer but ran out of time, although later found out skimmer line was busted so that was fixed early this summer.

    This spring, we opened it up and fixed some lines and various other problems and it turned green once again. The guy helping me fix the pool gave me some advice to get it crystal clear which was 16 gal of 10% liquid chlorine. I added the 16 gal and for 3 days it was cloudy and the chlorine levels stayed sky high and it turned the milky blue it is still to this day. The levels of FC came down and that's where I'm at now. So I've been trying to get it clear these past few weeks by balancing everything and still nothing, the pool place gave me some ideas (the TA was high, clarify) but none worked so hopefully I can get some help here, I've searched through the forums and read the advice but I still no not what to do. I've been given so much advice from various individuals that I don't know which route to go.

    Here are my current levels and pictures I just took

    FC -5ppm
    pH-7.0-7.2 (due to me lowering my TA)
    TA- 100
    TH - 300
    CYA 5-10 ppm (although i have added about 2-3 lbs to help raise this more about 2 days ago)

    Any help to get me going would be great!!!! I was hoping to get it up and going by memorial day for our cookout hopefully I can!!

    Thanks!



    17K (estimated) gal, concrete/fiberglass, Hayward 18" sand filter, 3/4HP Hayward Pump

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    Mod Squad Bama Rambler's Avatar
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    Re: Troubles With Cloudy water

    welcome to TFP

    Are you running your pump 24 hours a day?
    How are you testing? (your test kit, pool store, etc.)
    Exactly what day did you add the 16 gallons of Liquid Chlorine?
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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: Troubles With Cloudy water

    Welcome to TFP.

    Have you vacuumed the pool yet?

    Large amounts of organic debris can consume a lot of chlorine. With your still dissolving CYA is the chlorine level dropping to 0ppm between additions? You'll get better results if you maintain a higher FC level and never let the level drop below about 5ppm. Run your filter 24/7, brush the pool at least daily (which may make it worse at first), vacuum as frequently as needed.

    Since you don't know about the filter condition, you need to keep an eye on the return water to make sure the filter is working. If you are comfortable doing so, you can pull the valve off or remove the cap and check that the sand is at the appropriate level and not full of some kind of goo.
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    Re: Troubles With Cloudy water

    I sweep the pool once or twice a day (getting very few leaves out now, but getting a white milky substance out), and leave the pump running 24/7. I added the 16 gal probably about a 10-11 days ago. I also added the CYA not through the skimmer but rather a sock in from of the return jet, so that when I backwash I don't wash the CYA out. I have both taken a water sample to the pool store, and have taken tests with my own test kit, they roughly coincide. I did change the sand last fall so the sand is brand new, whether that matters I don't know? The return water looks ok, not cloudy or anything (only if I forget to rinse when I backwash)

    Hope that helps!
    17K (estimated) gal, concrete/fiberglass, Hayward 18" sand filter, 3/4HP Hayward Pump

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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: Troubles With Cloudy water

    Are you using any kind of powdered shock, pH adjuster or calcium? They can add to cloudiness, and some are slow to dissolve so they sit on the bottom. If there is something coming up when you vacuum or brush, I'd vacuum at least daily. The more stuff you can get out with the filter, the more quickly it will clear.

    I would hold the chlorine around 15ppm. If you don't see an improvement, you might try adding clarifier. Sometimes it's a big help, sometimes it's a big waste. It's usually pretty effective pretty quickly if it's going to work.
    TFP Moderator
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    Re: Troubles With Cloudy water

    When I vacuum I get cloudy water, which I assume is dead algae from when I shocked. I usually add a gallon of liquid chlorine at night to raise the levels a bit (per someone's advice) but maybe I should just shock it all over again (leave the chlorine levels at around 15? I adjusted the TA with M. Acid which lowered my pH but that will come back, other than that I have not tried anything else, until I sort of have a path to follow. I have two bottles of clarifier and algecide that people have bought me to throw in there, because that's what works with their pool, but I have not put them in the pool yet.
    17K (estimated) gal, concrete/fiberglass, Hayward 18" sand filter, 3/4HP Hayward Pump

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    svenpup's Avatar
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    Re: Troubles With Cloudy water

    Fist off, 16gal of 10% bleach is a TON of chlorine to add all at once...enough to raise your FC by almost 100ppm.

    I highly recommend carefully reading through pool school and getting a handle on what chemicals to add, how to add them, and most importantly WHY you need (or don't need) them.

    If you read through "How to Shock" in pool school (link in my signature) shocking is not a one time thing...it is a process where you hold the FC at a target level (based on your CYA), adding chlorine as often as possible (as frequently as once per hour) to bring you back to that level, until you meet the criteria that tell you that you are done shocking.

    I wouldn't add any clarifier until you sure that you are done shocking.
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    Re: Troubles With Cloudy water

    What test kit are you using?
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    Re: Troubles With Cloudy water

    I bought a test kit from the pool store, I don't know the exact name brand of it. (I did order today a more accurate FC and CC reader from tftkits) Do you recommend me shock it again this week and leave it shocked for the rest of the week? I know I will lose some to sunlight, but how long do I need to shock it for?
    17K (estimated) gal, concrete/fiberglass, Hayward 18" sand filter, 3/4HP Hayward Pump

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    Mod Squad JohnT's Avatar
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    Re: Troubles With Cloudy water

    I'd recommend a few days. Obviously you are wanting to swim this weekend, so the sooner you start, the better. The article Shocking Your Pool
    will give you some good tips on determining when you are done shocking.
    TFP Moderator
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    Re: Troubles With Cloudy water

    Rub your hand on the Fibreglas; does it leave your hand "chalky"?

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    Re: Troubles With Cloudy water

    I wouldn't say chalky, the surface is a little rough, but when I take my hand out I wouldn't say its chalky. If it was, what would that mean?
    17K (estimated) gal, concrete/fiberglass, Hayward 18" sand filter, 3/4HP Hayward Pump

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    Re: Troubles With Cloudy water

    Fibreglas tends to "chalk" after a while. I don't know what the technical term is for it, but Fibreglas, unlike what the sales guy/gal tells you, is not "forever finish". I've seen plenty of them that when you rub them they send off a cloud in to the water. I suppose it could be a slow break down of the product, or maybe the gel coat, but it degrades like any other "finish" you put in a pool.

    It even looks (as best as I can tell from the pictures) like it may have been painted previously. Could that be? If that is the case, then it is the breaking down of the paint.

    I'm just not convinced this is chemical related (the numbers you have posted are not bad).

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    Re: Troubles With Cloudy water

    So I've been at shock levels for roughly 2 days and still no visible change, so I added clarifier last night in a sort of a last ditch prayer. All i got was a slight layer of foam on top, I could see larger clumps of white floating around last night, thinking it was working, but this morning still cloudy. Should I add more clarifier, I'm still at shock levels, or any other advice? My levels are roughly the same as before expect the chlorine levels are higher in the 12-15 range. Or just give it time? I'm going to check out my filter this afternoon make sure the sand is ok but I would think it would be ok as I just changed it last fall. Thanks for any help.
    17K (estimated) gal, concrete/fiberglass, Hayward 18" sand filter, 3/4HP Hayward Pump

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